A new perspective on the annual performance review
How to get the most out of the process and prepare employees for success.
April 2, 2019
On March 5, administrators across Metropolitan State University of Denver received their first official email on performance-review season 2019. The communication included helpful information on dates, deadlines and trainings. But to learn more about the value of the review process — for both supervisors and those they supervise — the Early Bird chatted with Diane Forgione, senior employee-relations specialist in the Office of Human Resources.
Recognizing that some employees dread the performance-review season, Forgione advocates for flipping the script and changing the perspective.
“Performance-review season can be rough because it’s the end of the semester and fiscal year,” Forgione said. “But it’s intended to give employees and supervisors the opportunity to highlight successes, address possible developmental areas and most importantly identify a road map for the coming year.”
People want to know how they’re performing, and consistent feedback is vital for helping employees know they’re on the right track.
“People need honest, specific, objective and timely feedback,” Forgione continued. “If we have a strong feedback process built in, staff always know where they stand. The annual performance review gives supervisors the stage and the invitation to begin building a consistent process.”
Her tips include keeping communication open throughout the year by scheduling regular check-ins and engaging with employees about what they’re doing well and what they could improve, ensuring that no one is caught off-guard in conversations about performance gaps. “Give employees the opportunity and tools to improve,” Forgione added, noting that Human Resources offers a slew of professional-development and training opportunities.
Those opportunities and resources don’t just exist for supervisees, however. Supervisors are encouraged to take advantage of process-review-specific trainings, which run through April 25. This year, the trainings will feature presenters from the Employers Council, who will discuss the role of coaching and mentoring in retention. Forgione will also present on a variety of issues, including managing performance gaps and employee reactions to difficult conversations. She’ll be available to answer common questions related to midyear supervisor changes, responsibility and job-description changes, performance-gap documentation, deadline concerns and more.